7 SEO Sins To Avoid For Higher Rankings

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Posted on Feb 22nd 2017

With the huge emphasis that has been placed on content production in recent years, competition for travel consumers’ attention online has never been fiercer. A high quality and strategic SEO campaign is therefore essential if you want to be the best answer to your guests’ search queries and drive those all important direct bookings.

But as we all keep hearing, the practice has gone through some pretty immense changes since its beginnings in keyword-focused content. In today’s search landscape, it’s all about striking the right balance between user-focused content and convincing Google and the other search engines that your content is the best. Inevitably, in the quest to craft this perfect user experience, a few mistakes get made along the way. But fear not; most of them are easily avoidable if you know what to look out for.

1. Letting Old Content Go Rusty

Let’s face it. You’ve had your hotel’s website up and running for a while now and it probably contains a ton of content you’ve practically forgotten about since you first published it. But if you’re not finding ways to revisit and refresh these older posts on a regular basis, you could be leaving a valuable opportunity to boost your SERPs visibility on the table.

Delve into your site analytics data and identify your best and worst performing blog posts. Could they be added to, switched up or improved to boost ranking potential? Don’t forget to conduct some keyword research to inform your efforts.

2. Neglecting Mobile Users

If your website isn’t mobile friendly, your guests browsing from a small screen are far less likely to stick around long enough to make a booking. Thanks to Google algorithm changes that favour mobile optimised content, they’ll be less likely to even discover it, too.

Act now: take steps to make sure your hotel’s website is responsive and displays and performs perfectly across devices.

3. Your Site Speed Lets You Down

This one is a no brainer. Sites which load quickly provide a better user experience and are more likely to rank highly and convert as a result.

Google PageSpeed Insights will help you analyze your website speed score. If it’s slower than you would expect, simple steps such as using browser caching, optimising images to load faster and minifying JavaScript can help you get back on track.

4. Forgetting Quality Internal and External Links

Linking to other content within your site, and to other high quality websites, helps your guests find other relevant content, while signalling credibility to the search engines.

Take every opportunity you can to include internal and external links within your website.

Tip: We recommend you ensure that links directing to other websites open in a new window so guests are more likely to stay engaged with your own website, even as they venture elsewhere.

5. Not Breaking Up Large Blocks Of Content

If there’s one thing that unites nearly all internet users across the board, it’s that they’re looking to find information quickly and easily, and absorb it at a glance. As a result, large, unbroken blocks of text can be majorly off putting for many, especially those browsing from a mobile device.

Less is more. And if you really have a lot that needs to be said, utilize headlines to ensure content is easier to digest. This will not only make it easy for your guests to read about your property, it’ll reduce your bounce rate and send a positive signal to Google about your website’s helpfulness.

6. Forgetting To Optimise Images

The images you include on your website don’t only add visual interest and help sell your hotel to travellers; they play a role in telling your story to search engines too.

Make your images work for you by optimising their names and alt text with relevant keywords. And to ensure your new fast page speeds aren’t jeopardised, optimise the size of your images for each screen size.

7. Neglecting Your Local SEO Campaign

If you haven’t done so already, claim and optimise your hotel’s Google My Business listing. Taking advantage of local SEO is a great way to boost your search visibility and get discovered by more of your guests online.

Is your hotel guilty of any of these common SEO mistakes? How are you striving to find the right balance between guest-friendly content and optimising for search? Let us know in the comments below!

RELATED PAGES AND BLOG POSTS:

- Is SEO Dead in 2017?
- What’s Happening In SEO Right Now – 4 Key Trends to Watch
- Keyword Research 101: How To Uncover New Key Search Terms For Your Hotel

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